, embroiled in a ratings controversy over the violent content of its upcoming
video game, is backing down -- for now.
The company said it has "temporarily suspended" plans to distribute
PlayStation 2 console.
, which was scheduled to go on sale in July, was
denied a rating on Wednesday by the British Board of Film Certification because of its violent content. The move limits sales of the game by British brick-and-mortar retailers.
In the U.S., the certification agency Entertainment Software Rating Board has given the game an initial rating of "Adults Only," which limits sales to users 18 years and older, and will effectively prevent the game from being sold in many major retailers, including
. The retail giant accounts for about 25% of sales of video games in the U.S.
Take-Two's decision comes after Nintendo and Sony said they don't allow games with "Adults Only" ratings to be sold for their consoles.
Take-Two's stock was recently down 5 cents, or 0.2%, to $20.60 in after-hours trading.
Take-Two said it will "review its options with regard to the recent decisions made by the BBFC and ESRB," but did not make it clear when the company plans to release the game or if it will modify it to tone down the content.
"We continue to stand behind this extraordinary game," said Take-Two in a statement. "We believe in freedom of creative expression, as well as responsible marketing, both of which are essential to our business of making great entertainment."